Is seeing believing? {The Woman in the Window by A.J. Finn @ajfinnbooks}

Unputdownable peeping Tom tale

About The Woman in the Window by A.J. Finn: It isn't paranoia if it's really happening . . . Anna Fox lives alone--a recluse in her New York City home, unable to venture outside. She spends her days drinking wine (maybe too much), watching old movies, recalling happier times . . . and spying on her neighbors. Then the Russells move into the house across the way: a father, a mother, their teenage son. The perfect family. But when Anna, gazing out her window one night, sees something she shouldn't, her world begins to crumble--and its shocking secrets are laid bare. What is real? What is imagined? Who is in danger? Who is in control? In this diabolically gripping thriller, no one--and nothing--is what it seems. Twisty and powerful, ingenious and moving, The Woman in the Window is a smart, sophisticated novel of psychological suspense that recalls the best of Hitchcock--an unforgettable thriller that Gillian Flynn calls "amazing."

My two cents

Sidenote: It’s been a long time (unbelievably over a year, almost two!) since I last posted a book review, so getting back into my blog has me wondering how I’ll fare this time around. I’ve pared the reading ao much that I’ve been down to about 20 books a year, with quite a few being rereads.

I got a hold of this particular novel because my colleague and I were discussing just how mindf*ckingly brilliant Gillian Flynn is! As this one is in the same genre as Flynn, and Flynn herself recommended it, I needed to see if her glowing review of “amazing” was true. Here’s why I enjoyed it:

It’s a slow burn. This starts off with the simple introduction of Dr. Anna Fox, a well known child psychologist and now recluse. As the pages turn, Anna’s story and circumstances become more and more apparent. She suffers from agoraphobia because of a yet-unknown-reason to the reader. She hasn’t stepped out of the house in close to a year.

She passes her days watching black and white films, drinking her favourite wine, and popping her plethora of drugs (note: note to be taken with alcohol), and logging online and giving advice to other recluses. Oh, and people watching.

Anna takes a particular interest her new neighbours across the park. One day, she believes she witnesses a murder. But no one believes her.

It’s a pyschological thriller that left me second guessing myself. After the murder, I was wholly on Anna’s side. The many, many pages before had made me “friends” with Anna. I knew her. I knew her family. I knew she wasn’t the type to imagine things. I was certain she was sane; she was just sad and traumatized. Wasn’t she?

As more layers were peeled back and revelations made, I hemmed and hawed. I seesawed from believing her, to writing her off as a drunk, overly drugged, and watching too much film noir. She was becoming paranoid, delusional, and was hallucinating.

Would you be like me, so easily gullible to Anna’s charms? Or will you be objective and see all the red herrings? Did the murder happen or not? You’ll have to find out!

Love the film noir twist.Throughout there are references to Anna’s favourite black and white films. It’s obvious that the author is a film noir aficionado. The references were quite lost on me but they lent interesting backdrops to Anna’s story. When I Googled the book, I was’t surprised to see that there was an old film with the same title.

It’s dark yet relatable. If you’re wondering, this is not as dark, graphic or disturbing as Gillian Flynn’s work. Everything is purely psychological which makes Anna’s story much more relatable to the everyday Joe. There is no violence or sexual perversions that seems to be hallmarks of Flynn’s work.


In an homage to film noir, I found this psychological thriller hard to put down! I love it when a book exceeds expectations. Highly recommend!

#BookmarkMonday: Oddities, #ghoststories, #TimBurton and #Pinoyauthors

It’s been too long since the last Bookmark Monday post. I am really happy a few of you kept posting on your blogs and Instagram while I was basically AWOL. Bookmarks will never go out of style ... or function. The problem with me is that function always trumps form. So many times I am scambling to find something to use a bookmark. I DO like to keep postcards on hand and I kept this one sent in by Pinoy author Catherine Torres (loved both her Sula’s Voyage and Mariposa Gang and Other Stories).

Torres, on the postcard, gives an excerpt of ghost stories and Filipino folklore. Zoom on the photo.
To add even a bit more of eeeee, check out my current Tim Burton read The Melancholy Death of Oyster Boy and Other Stories Melancholy Death of Oyster Boy and Other Stories. Odd much? I couldn’t hold back a few chuckles when flipping though this!

Do you like creepy reading? Are you joining any scary reading challenges?

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#BookmarkMonday is a weekly meme that started in 2009. Link up your bookmark below! Don't forget to share your love for bookmarks, whether yours or you dream of making them yours
  • Post about it on your blog / Twitter / Pinterest / Instagram and link up below.
  • If you're on Instagram please look me up: @guiltlessreader) tag me so I can comment!
  • Share your pic with the #BookmarkMonday hashtag on Twitter so I can go check it out! 
  • If you'd like to post on the #BookmarkMonday Pinterest Board, shoot me an email at readerrabbit22 at and I'll add you as a contributor.

Look ... Literary book gifts + 20% off!

I love a good literary-themed anything so this lovely little store caught my eye. Everything looks so classy and classic! Here’s a quick little insight into the store through a chat with Melissa, the owner of Literary Book Gifts. And a little treat for all my readers. Thanks, Melissa!

[I did not receive compensation or any product to put up this post. Just helping out a fellow book lover and small business owner.]


I started the online store Literary Book Gifts to spread my personal love of reading and all things literature through iconic designs of some of our most beloved novels. Whether you are a Jane Austen fan or resonate with Henry David Thoreau’s ideas, there is something for every book lover in the collection!

I believe that great classics are meant to be read, talked about, and discussed. Each tee and tote is a perfect conversation starter. And even if it does not start up a conversation, maybe someone will see you wearing your A Tale of Two Cities shirt and pick up a copy of the Charles Dickens classic later at the local library. Graphics and artwork have a very powerful way of spreading information. This is one of the many things I love about having the opportunity to create visual representations of some of my favorite novels. I am selective about the authors and titles that make their way into the collection. Popular titles are great of course, but the lesser known ones are very important as well. I loved reading the existential tale of Gregor Samsa, and his transformation into an insect in The Metamorphosis by Franz Kafka. So I am pleased that it can have a place in the collection alongside more well known works such as Jane Eyre and Ulysses.

With every design you have a choice of a shirt or tote bag. The t-shirts come in women’s and men’s sizing. Each shirt is made of high quality 100% cotton composition, with the exception of some lovely heather color options that have a mixed fiber content. What really makes the shirts at Literary Book Gifts stand apart from the competition is that they come in a wide variety of colors. Each shirt comes in at least a few colors, and some of them up have up to twenty options. I believe the design itself is equally as important as the shirt color for the individual who wears it. Take the case of the Edgar Allan Poe shirt. In the women’s version choosing a pink or purple version gives off an entirely different stylish vibe than the indigo or grey options. Offering the same design to different and unique people is a great way for personalization and ultimately for the shirt to become a staple item in one’s wardrobe.

As a discount for the readers of Guiltless Reading, enter the promo code GUILTLESSREADING20 at checkout at Literary Book Gifts Book Gifts for a 20 percent discount! There is no minimum needed to order and this code does not expire.

I was chilling ...

  • Saturday, October 06, 2018

... for a year.

I just needed a change. And there was a lot of change I was dealing with personally. Blogging wasn’t exactly a priority.

Thanks to those who asked how I am doing. A few of you reached out to me with friendly hi’s and hellos over social media where I didn’t just drop out of sight. I got a ton of emails from publishers and authors and for the most part I have just been quiet.

Until now. Baby steps back into blogging. Maybe, we’ll see.

More soon!

#Friday56 & #BookBeginnings: The Plague Diairies (+Giveaway!)

Fate is a line free will twists into a spiral.
- p. 3

For Friday 56:
"If ever there's a drop left in this box , or the King's, Miss," he replied.
"It tasted of smoke and cherries," I said.

He tilted the bottle to read the label."And rain. One of his favorites this one."
- p. 56

About The Plague Diaries by Ronlyn Domingue*: The astounding, epic conclusion to the Keeper of Tales Trilogy brings together the cryptic prophecy in The Mapmaker's War and the troubling mysteries in The Chronicle of Secret Riven--leading to an unforgettable reckoning between lies and truth. We are all born made of gold. Secret Riven--the mystically gifted heroine who now represses her uncanny telepathic power--works for the mysterious magnate Fewmany as an archivist in his private library. There, she stumbles upon the arcane manuscript that had vanished following her mother's untimely death. She suspects the manuscript contains a profound secret, and she is yet unaware of its link to a thousand-year-old war and her own family's legacy. The tasks before her are clear: Secret must finally learn what Fewmany wants from her as well as the meaning of a strange symbol she's dreamed of since childhood. At last, she must confront the questions haunting her and depart on a quest to find the truth about herself, her dead mother, and her fate--to unleash a Plague of Silences meant to destroy, and transform, the world as all have known it. A dazzling, genre-bending masterwork, The Plague Diaries illuminates the power of our choices, the scars they leave, and the wounds they heal. 


That first line is a gem. And the page 56 snippet is intriguing - words that draw me in, intrigue me, and eventually push me to read.

I've been a little quiet lately on the blog as life has taken some twists and turns. But I am well and I hope you all are too! It's uncanny that I got an email recently from the author of today's feature book, Ronlyn Domingue, who I "met" through the first book in this trilogy. I loved that first book that the second made its way to me ... and now, four years later, the third and final book is now here!

Ronlyn has a guest post (involves lots of paper and pens) and a GIVEAWAY. So please, join !



1 paper copy The Plague Diaries by Ronlyn Domingue
Open US

Leave a meaningful comment or question for Ronlyn in the comments below.
Tweet about this giveaway (leave link in comments).
Share on Facebook (leave link in comments). 

Get extra entries on Instagram:
Giveaway time! . . Do you love a good fantasy and magical story? I have read both of @ronlyndomingue's books in The Keeper of Tales Trilogy and now, book 3 The Plague Diaries is finally out! Don't worry, all books are standalone and can be read individually. Watch for her guest post on my blog soon (I'll post the link in my bio). . . To enter for a chance to win your own copy, all you have to do is follow the steps below. This giveaway is open US and ends on September 20th. The winner will be announced shortly after. 😃 This prize is kindly provided by the publisher. . . . To enter all you have to do is: ✅FOLLOW @guiltlessreader ✅LIKE this post ✅TAG two friends (or more) ✅For an extra entry, repost this pic with the hashtag #guiltlessreading ✅For an extra entry, leave a comment or question for Ronlyn on her guest post GIVEAWAY FACTS: -This giveaway is not affiliated with Instagram or sponsored. Book prize was provided courtesy of the publisher - Giveaway is open US only - Giveaway ends 20 September 2017 - Giveaway accounts are automatically disqualified
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© guiltless readingMaira Gall